THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING

In Washington, it’s a war of words over top general

Globe Staff / June 23, 2010

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General Stanley A. McChrystal and his aides had some strong words in Rolling Stone magazine for — and got strong reactions from — Washington players. A sampling:

From the Rolling Stone article: “Are you asking about Vice President Biden?’’ McChrystal says with a laugh, according to the article. “Who’s that?’’ “Biden?’’ a top adviser to the general is quoted as saying. “Did you say: Bite me?’’

The White House responds: “The president looks forward to speaking with him tomorrow about what’s in that article,’’ said White House press secretary Robert Gibbs.

From the Rolling Stone article: “It was a 10-minute photo op,’’ says an adviser to McChrystal. “Obama clearly didn’t know anything about him, who he was. Here’s the guy who’s going to run his [expletive] war, but he didn’t seem very engaged. The Boss was pretty disappointed.’’

The White House responds: “He’ll have his undivided attention tomorrow,’’ White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said, referring to McChrystal.

From the Rolling Stone article: “Politicians like [Arizona Republican Senator John] McCain and [Massachusetts Democratic Senator John F.] Kerry,’’ says another aide, “turn up, have a meeting with Karzai, criticize him at the airport press conference, then get back for the Sunday talk shows. Frankly, it’s not very helpful.’’

Kerry responds: “It would be a grave mistake to allow this unfolding news drama to distract anyone from the mission at hand. Now is not the time for Washington to be sidetracked by chatter,’’ Kerry said.